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Crack the Case With These 17 Sci-Fi Mystery Books

Cyberpunk thrillers, time traveling killers, and more. 

sci fi mystery books

Science fiction and mystery together lead to an addictive story that’ll have readers on the edge of their seats. When supported by fantastic writing, the combination of these genres always results in an explosive good time.

If you still don’t believe me, here are 17 amazing sci-fi mystery books that you can check out for yourself. Give these titles a try, and see which ones get your heart pumping the loudest.

Genesis Code

Genesis Code

By Jamie Metzl

In this biopunk thriller set in 2023 America, an ambitious journalist digs into a woman’s death and discovers she may have been pregnant with a genetically-altered fetus. When the death toll of young women rises and authorities begin to interfere with his investigation, Rich Azadian must unite with his allies to save others from the same mysterious end. 

Man in the Empty Suit

Man in the Empty Suit

By Sean Ferrell

Grown bored by other people, a time traveler prefers to celebrate his birthday on his own—with all past and future versions of himself in attendance. But his 39th birthday party is deflated when he stumbles on the murdered corpse of himself from one year in the future. With 365 days to solve his own murder, the birthday boy must rely on numerous versions of himself if he wants to live to celebrate another year.

dead space

Dead Space

By Kali Wallace

When an old friend reaches out with a shocking discovery regarding a traumatic attack they both survived, Hester Marley's surprise quickly turns to suspicion. And when said friend is killed at a remote asteroid mine shortly after, Hester becomes more determined to find the truth—even if that means putting herself at risk once more.

altered carbon

Altered Carbon

By Richard K. Morgan

Takeshi Kovacs is a former U.N. envoy who has been killed before. But with 25th-century technology, a person's consciousness can be uploaded into a new body. Still, Kovacs's most recent death was particularly painful. Now, he must sift through the underworld of a futuristic San Francisco to investigate the murder of a prominent businessman. 

When Gravity Fails

When Gravity Fails

By George Alec Effinger

When Marid's acquaintances are killed one by one, circumstances force him to work with the underworld's "godfather" as an instrument of vengeance. In this cyberpunk noir, taking down a serial killer requires extensive body modification.

auxiliary london 2039

Auxiliary: London 2039

By John Richter

In a future society run by an omnipresent AI machine, a police detective finds himself on the cusp of uncovering a massive conspiracy. When an accused murderer blames the crime on his robotic arm, Detective Dremmler must question a powerful corporation with overwhelming resources.



By Marc Levy

On a July morning, investigative reporter Andrew Stilman is stabbed to death, only to regain consciousness exactly two months earlier. That leaves him with 60 days to identify his murderer and save his own life.

far from the light of heaven

Far from the Light of Heaven

By Tade Thompson

The Ragtime carries 1,000 unconscious colonizers to their new home among the stars. At first the mission appears successful, until a crew member discovers that some of the sleepers have in fact been killed—and it's up to investigator Rasheed Fin to identify the culprit.

black authors

The Intuitionist

By Colson Whitehead

Lila Mae Watson is the city's first Black female elevator inspector, and known for being the Intuitionist with the highest accuracy rate in the department. But when an unfortunate elevator disaster heightens the long-standing feud between Empiricists and Intuitionists, Lila Mae must launch a secret investigation to clear her name.

RELATED: 30 Black Science Fiction and Fantasy Authors You Need to Read

a memory of empire

A Memory Called Empire

By Arkady Martine

Ambassador Mahit Dzmare believes it's no coincidence that her predecessor has died of mysterious circumstances, especially considering the imperial political upheaval. As she tracks down the murderer and tries to save her home, she unexpectedly unearths secret plots, shady deals, and personal vendettas.

Angel of Europa

Angel of Europa

By Allen Steele

Two astronauts are sent to explore the surface of Europa, one of Jupiter's moons, and only one comes back. The crewmembers suspect that Evangeline Chatelain, the surviving astronaut, killed her partner. Evangeline, however, tells a story of a terrifying space monster. The investigator into the death must decide whether Evangeline is a murderer or, perhaps worse, telling the truth.

midnight water city

Midnight, Water City

By Chris McKinney

When Akira Kimura saves the Earth from a near-catastrophic collision, she's catapulted into celebrity-level fame. But then Akira is suddenly killed, and her former bodyguard and lover becomes obsessed with solving the mystery of her murderer. 

the sleepless

The Sleepless

By Victor Manibo

When reporter Jamie Vega launches an investigation into his boss’ strange death, he discovers that he was the last person who saw Simon alive. So why doesn't Jamie remember it at all? 

As Jamie explores his missing memory, he discovers disturbing truths about how he became one of The Sleepless.

Leviathan Wakes James S. A. Corey

Leviathan Wakes

By James S.A. Corey

Leviathan Wakes features several mysteries. First, Jim Holden is the executive officer of an ice miner that runs from the rings of Saturn to the mining stations of the Asteroid Belt. When Jim and his crew come upon a derelict ship, they find themselves thrown into a world of life-and-death stakes. Jim must discover who left the ship and why before war breaks out.

At the same time, Detective Miller is looking for a single girl in a vast solar system. As the mysteries intertwine, both Jim and Detective Miller learn to tread carefully and defy long odds in their quests for the truth.

the tea master and the detective

The Tea Master and the Detective

By Aliette de Bodard

A damaged sentient spaceship and a drug-using scholar make an unlikely pair of detectives. But upon the discovery of a murdered corpse, the two team up to investigate, and unlock each other’s dark pasts in the process.

This highly-acclaimed novella is a great read for those who want 'Sherlock Holmes in space' vibes.

we have always been here

We Have Always Been Here

By Lena Nguyen

This sci-fi mystery thriller follows the journey of Deucalion, a ship bound for the planet Eon and crewed by both humans and androids. Deucalion's human crew members are studied as they prepare to colonize their destination planet. However, things take a turn for the worse when a radiation storm strikes, and all the ship's passengers become trapped in terror.

the caves of steel

The Caves of Steel

By Isaac Asimov

A classic sci-fi detective story, The Caves of Steel follows New York City Police Detective Elijah Baley a millennium in the future. When a space traveler is murdered under mysterious circumstances, Baley is assigned to work the case with R. Daneel Olivaw. 

Baley understands that the "R" stands for robot, meaning his new partner is one of the humanoid creations that Baley mistrusts. Strangest of all is that his new partner was made in the image and likeness of the murder victim ...

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